Skip to content

Threat surface

My Employer decided the day after the Belgium incident (not the day of, oddly enough, though I certainly knew about it long before I went to work, so they must have, but didn’t react very quickly) to institute tougher security checks at the entrance. Physically touching peoples IDs (but not RFID scanning them, because no Bad Guy would ever be able to laminate a card – build a dirty bomb, yes, operate a plastic card-counterfeiting operation identical to those used for credit cards, no) and opening trunks (but not checking backseats or briefcases) really slowed things down. But it would not have stopped the San Bernadino incident – because those guys had cards and IDs. And work-issued cell phones.

And all it did was push the threat further out. What was to stop a Bad Guy with a legally purchased SKS from simply driving down the line of several hundred cars backed up to the freeway entrance that security had conveniently lined up like carnival ducks?

In fact, it seems like this was the MO of the Brussels airport attack. It was in the lines before the security check, not after.

Security theater. Not that there was any specific threat, just something-must- be-done; this-is-something-therefore-do-this. The richest part, if you have a certain sense of black humor is that Security lined up employees for a repeat of the same scenario. Or sad, in another mindset.

I’m still more likely to be shot by one of the rent-a-cops than killed by a terrorist though.

I do pine for the old days when the on-campus shooting range was available to members of the employee shooting club. Before my time, though not long before my time.

The world is a different place now. We’ll tell ourselves that, with a sigh, even though it really isn’t – it’s largely safer and less violent.